ICANN clarification regarding .KP ccTLD

ICANN have issued a clarification following media reports that ICANN is scheduled to approve .kp as the ccTLD for the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) at its upcoming meeting in LA in October.ICANN’s statement goes on to say:
At the present time there is no delegated operator for the .KP domain, but ICANN has received a request to delegate the domain. This request was discussed by the ICANN Board at its meeting on 14 August 2007. The agenda of that meeting is a matter of public record, and the minutes will be published shortly. No decision was made on the delegation during this meeting.At this time the issues slated for discussion at the board meeting in Los Angeles have yet to be determined.As well, media reports have quoted Suh Jae-Chul as a member of the ICANN board, though this person is not on ICANN’s board, nor has been authorized to speak on ICANN’s behalf.Two-letter country code top-level domains were first introduced in the mid-1980s to provide local Internet communities within countries with their own locally-managed Internet domains. From the outset it was deemed that selecting what is, or is not, an eligible country for such a domain was well outside the scope of the management of the domain name system root zone. It was therefore decided a neutral third-party system would be used.ICANN relies solely on the ISO 3166-1 standard for determining eligible country codes. This standard is maintained by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). “KP” has long been established by ISO as North Korea’s two-letter code in that standard.The operation of a country’s ccTLD is an internal matter for each country and its local Internet community. In support of this, ICANN is responsible for delegating authority for the operation of ccTLDs to a specific operator based upon requests received from the country and its local Internet community. ICANN’s evaluation is focused on verifying the validity of the request, and ensuring it meets a number of technically-focused criteria. Apart from this analysis, the selection of both the operator, and the method of operation of a ccTLD is a matter for countries and local Internet communities to decide.For the ICANN announcement in full, see http://icann.org/announcements/announcement-2-17aug07.htm

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